Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Boy Scout Camp Update

Well, we've made it to Wednesday morning and haven't had to go retrieve Safety Guy from camp.  He's had some great fun, and some serious aggravation.  He informed me again last night that he was homesick and couldn't wait to come home, but he was also jazzed about the evening of "gladiator games" they had planned.  He was excited about some game involving Scouts running around in the woods after dark with flashlights.  I spent last night hoping that would end well, since Safety Guy is somewhat lacking in physical coordination, and doesn't like to be outside after dark.  I didn't get a phone call about injuries or being lost, so I'm assuming he eventually made it back to his tent. . . .

He tried a new food yesterday:  scrambled eggs, a standard Boy Scout camping breakfast.  The Scout Master has a novel way of preparing them, by having the kids mix an egg or two with a little milk, salt, and pepper in a plastic zip-lock bag, then boiling the bag for several minutes.  They fish the baggies out of the boiling water, squish them around a bit, boil them for another minute or two, then eat.  Saves on cleanup - I like the idea, and might borrow it for family camping trips in the future.  I'm psyched that Safety Guy finally TRIED the eggs.  I've been trying to get him to try scrambled eggs for years.  Yesterday he finally did, and proclaimed them, "Disgusting!"  Oh well, at least he tried them.

He had a bit of a crisis, yesterday, too.  We gave him some money to use at the camp store, enough to buy a drink or snack each day.  He kept it in his backpack in the tent.  Yesterday he couldn't find the money where he'd left it.  He looked everywhere, and told his Scout Master about it.  I hate to think it could have been stolen, but that's a distinct possibility.  Equally plausible is that he mislaid it in the tent, and hasn't found it yet.  He's never been good at finding things he's misplaced - he just does a surface scan of the room, but doesn't look under/behind/around things.  I can't count the number of times he's "lost" something and asked me for help, and I've walked into his room and found it within 30 seconds.  He was pretty upset when he called the first time, and I commiserated and encouraged him to really look through EVERYTHING he had around his cot.  I pointed out that if he found it, life would be fine again, and if he didn't find it, he hadn't lost anything by looking.  When he called us later, he still hadn't found his money, but said he thought it might still be in the tent mixed up with his stuff.  I'm hoping that's the case, and that he finds it soon.  It wasn't a large sum of money, less than $7, but it's the principle of the thing.  Stealing is WRONG, and Safety Guy is really unhappy that someone would do that to him, at Scout camp no less.  This is one occasion where I wish the Scout Master would hold on to the boys' money for them.

There are quite a number of troops at Camp Russell this week.  One is a group of Special Needs Boy Scouts, with a mixed bag of ages and abilities among the members, from teens to adults.  I was so proud when Safety Guy told me that he'd been talking with one of the guys from that troop and having fun in a group with him.  I like our son's lack of judgment about another person's ability/disability, and that he was willing to reach out and interact with someone new.  The other young man's apparent cerebral palsy didn't phase Safety Guy at all (in fact, it was SG who said he thought the other Scout had CP, and described to me the muscular/speech difficulties the other Scout had).  Safety Guy also thought the wheelchair of one of the SN Scouts was really cool:  it was made of PVC pipe, with over-sized inflated tires, so it was easier to use on bumpy woodland paths, and waterproof, so it could be wheeled right into the lake or through streams.  Cool!

Today Safety Guy will be able to go out in a boat on the lake with a partner.  This ought to be interesting - he's never canoed or done anything like that before.  I hope they have fun, and that he's paired with an older Scout with a little more experience (and common sense) with boats.  If he and his best friend E. try to set sail together, we could have a replay of Gilligan's Island, or the Titanic. . . .